Episode 298 | Rick Van Warner Interview

Today I am joined by Rick Van Warner, author of the powerful new memoir called On Pills and Needles. We talk about his history as a writer, the powerful real story of his family’s journey into and through drug addiction, why he wrote this book, and much more.


When Rick Van Warner found himself searching abandoned buildings and dangerous streets looking for his missing son, he had no idea that the synthetic, pill-form heroin that had snared his teen was already killing so many. In the years of pain and heartache that followed as he tried to save his son from opioid addiction, Van Warner discovered what the American public is just now becoming aware of: opioids prescribed for even minor pain relief are so addictive that even a few days of use can create dependency.

On Pills and Needles is a memoir that also serves as a wake-up call and crash course in opioid addiction. Through his harrowing personal story, Van Warner exposes the common causes of opioid addiction, effective and ineffective ways it has been treated, and how families can walk alongside loved ones who are dealing with the daily realities of addiction.

Rick Van Warner is a 30-year veteran of journalism, crisis management, and media relations. Rick was compelled to share his personal story to help other families after recognizing the endemic nature of the current opioid addiction epidemic. A former social worker who counseled at-risk youth, Rick lives in Winter Park, Florida, with his family.

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